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My Musical Projects

Solo Work | Prester John: Shawn Persinger & David Miller | Shoulda Coulda Woulda | Fretwater | Syzygia


Solo Work :

Website:
Ummmmmm - you are already in it

So, I guess there is not much I need to put here, since most of the information is spread around the rest of this site. Suffice it to say, that while I derive great enjoyment from the collaboration of artists, and will always be looking for talented and challenging folks to play with, there is something to also be said about exploring what one can by oneself. This has taken several forms with me over the years, including several songs that I have recorded solo, or in multi-track form with me playing all of the instruments, and with my exploration of a particular form of solo mandolin playing where I attempt to provide both melodic and accompanimental playing simultaneously. I have applied this approach to traditional folk tunes, jazz tunes, and pop / rock tunes, and always enjoy the challenge that is provided with trying to render a song faithfully in this style. Head over to my media page to hear a couple of examples of what I am talking about.

 

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Shawn Persinger David Miller are Prester John:

Website:
http://reverbnation.com/presterjohn

In 2008, I met Shawn Persinger at the Bethany Music and Dance event, and we immediately figured out that our musical interests shared much in common. A week later, we got together to run through some music on our own. After running through a couple of traditional standards, Shawn threw one of his original instrumentals in front of me. I was impressed with the level of intricacy and musical depth in the music, and Shawn was impressed that I could not only read the music, but play it as well. Thus began a musical partnership that has brought much to both of us. With our focus being the development of original instrumental and vocal compositions, we have played several venues and concerts across Connecticut, and are on the verge of releasing our first duet CD, entitled "Desire for a Straight Line." I am thrilled by the challenges that Shawn's music provides for me as a musician, and have been grateful for the growth that it has inspired in me.

 

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Shoulda Coulda Woulda:

Website:
http://andymayomusic.com/

Many years ago, through a series of coincidences too tortured to go into here, I met fellow Connecticut music teachers Andy Mayo and Jeff Rhone. Andy is a singer-guitarist-Chapman Stick player-songwriter, and Jeff is a singer-clawhammer banjo player-pennywhistler-autoharpist-folk musician extraordinaire. We started off playing traditional folk music informally at backyard gatherings, and eventually developed into a trio that people actually wanted to pay money to to have come and play at events. Andy also began writing original children's music for his daughters, and we began folding those into our performances. The result has been a musical partnership that has brought joy both to ourselves, and to countless audiences, young and old. We recorded several tunes for Andy's CD projects, and still play at school and library events, with a focus on exposing young audiences to the joys of acoustic music of all kinds.

 

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Fretwater:

Website:
http://www.roncody.com/music/balance.html

Back in the dark ages, before I saw the light of mandolin playing, I made a pretty good living as an electric bass player. Not long after I moved to Connecticut, I placed an add in a local arts magazine looking for players, and the very next day got a call from Ron Cody, a banjo player much in the mold of Bela Fleck (they both were students of Tony Trishka), saying that his quartet was looking for a bass player. A short audition later, I was playing full time with the group, exploring an eclectic mix of acoustic / electric / jazz / folk originals. We played regularly in the Connecticut region, as well as Massachusetts and Maine, and produced one full-length CD, "Balance." Geography finally separated the group as folks moved to Kansas City and Portland, Maine, but this project remains one of my favorites, even ten years later.

 

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Syzygia:

Webpage:
Syzygia

Founded in 2011 by David, Syzygia is Hartford's mandolin ensemble.